The More He Tries, The More Elitist Obama & Staff Appear
Who hasn’t seen the New Yorker Magazine’s satirical cover depicting Barack and Michelle Obama?
Our colleagues at the LA Times have a light-hearted discussion about this cover today. They discuss what they term as a “PR blunder” on Obama’s behalf and how he finally gave the right answer, only it was 54 hours too late. They quote and take up the same line as our friends at The Swamp did. Katie Fretland over there quoted Obama on his Larry King appearance Tuesday Night:
Here’s a person who doesn’t think the newly-infamous New Yorker cover is a big deal: Barack Obama.
In an interview with CNN’s Larry King, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president said he had “seen and heard worse” than the cartoon which depicted him and his wife as militant radicals.
“It’s a cartoon … and that’s why we’ve got the First Amendment,” Obama said. “And I think the American people are probably spending a little more time worrying about what’s happening with the banking system and the housing market and what’s happening in Iraq and Afghanistan, than a cartoon. So I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about it.”
Now at both blogs they are talking about his PR blunder, and amazed that a campaign that has had so few screwed up on this one. As if they could have avoided it, if only they had thought about it a little more.
Well they couldn’t have. See, all of those guys running the campaign (and I know many of them) as well as Obama are really genuine elitists, and not quite the sophisticated variety of swells like at the New Yorker, either. They are so busy congratulating each other on an hourly basis for being so good at “knowing” what the masses will react to, they can’t see the forest for the trees. They are really more like annoying college Sophomores, always so pleased with how clever they are, educated they are. Now don’t take this as some anti-Obama slam. The same is true of most politicians of the same age, and certainly is true of most Congressional staffers!
Obama’s people are so worried about the polls, they fail to separate out the issues voters will actually consider when deciding. If Barack Obama was better at communicating to real, everyday Americans he wouldn’t have the problem he does with people doubting his word. Reactions like his initial one to the New Yorker cover, merely paint him as a humorless wonk, a too-earnest narcissistic politician, immediately concerned with being portrayed with an image that troubles him (mainly due to past mistaken, albeit self-serving, associations) rather than a sophisticated and educated citizen, able to grasp satire and turn it around to his advantage.
His kind of liberal, and exactly the kind his major handlers are, start from the premise “the people” are so ignorant they need to be “saved” from themselves by the more educated and enlightened people that they consider they are. Saved from their stupid and uninformed opinions. That only if they would open up their minds, they would see everything as Obama and staff see them.
That is exactly the thinking that elected Muskie, Dukakis, Hart, Edwards, Gore and Kerry as President. It is arrogance, plain and simple, a feeling of entitlement, of self-importance. The public has always discerned this, and rejected it. 2008 will be no different.
Barack Obama still has time to turn this around. But not much time.